Despite its charitable work for the war effort, Parimatch has been sanctioned by President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky, forcing the company to shut up shop in its home country. The sportsbook is just one of 287 gambling-linked legal entities sanctioned by Ukraine, in addition to 120 individuals.
President Zelensky signed Decree No. 145/2023 to set the sanctions, announced on Friday by the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine.
financed various Russian schemes.”
In a statement, Zelensky said that the sanctioned individuals and organizations “through gambling business schemes, worked against Ukraine, withdrew funds from our state and financed various Russian schemes.”
The other sanctioned legal entities include Betcity, Bet.Ru, Leo Financial Company, Sportbet, Sportloto, PokerMatch UA, and Matchbet. The duration of the sanctions imposed on Parimatch and the other firms is 50 years.
Parimatch pulls the plug
Expanding on the decision to issue sanctions, Zelensky said it had taken some time to come to the resolution, but it had “been thoroughly worked out and:
closes schemes worth tens of billions.”
State enforcers have blocked Parimatch’s website in Ukraine in accordance with the sanctions, which industry observers expect will have a significant impact on the betting and lottery industry in Ukraine.
According to UKrinform.net on Monday, Parimatch has now suspended its operations in the country. The company said its next step will be to provide refunds to clients who it claims will all receive their balances in full. The operator is also looking for a legal mechanism to repay all debts.
A charitable firm
Parimatch — who’s co-CEOs Syrotian and Maksym Liashko are from Ukraine — previously made significant contributions to the war effort in Ukraine. The company’s charitable work included supplying medical equipment, supporting veterans, and contributing to the building of military barracks.
At the end of 2022, Parimatch confirmed its foundation had raised more than $500,000 in support for the humanitarian effort in Ukraine.
In March last year, Parimatch also used its advertising space with Premier League partner clubs such as Chelsea FC to show support for Ukraine. The advertising space showcased the tag line “The World is Against War” with the hashtag #StandForUkraine.